This flavoursome mash of potato, fennel and garlic goes well with practically all main dishes, whether fish, poultry or meat. Floury varieties of potato such as Pentland Squire, King Edward or Marfona are best for mashing as they produce a light fluffy result. Waxy potatoes are more suitable for baking, or for salads, as they produce a dense, rather starchy mash.
800g/ 1 1/4lb potatoes cut into chunks
2 large fennel bulbs
90ml/6 tbsp garlic-flavoured olive oil
120-150ml/4-5fl oz/1/2-2/3cup milk or single (light) cream
1. Boil the potatoes in salted water for 20 minutes, until tender.
2. Meanwhile, trim and coarsely chop the fennel, reserving any feathery tops. Chop the tops and set them aside. Heat 30ml/2 tbsp of the oil in a heavy pan. Add the fennel, cover and cook over a low heat for 20-30 minutes, until soft but not browned.
3. Drain and mash the potatoes. Puree the fennel in a food milk or blender and heat it into the potato with the remaining oil.
4. Warm the milk or cream and beat sufficient into the potato and fennel to make a creamy, light mixture. Season to taste and reheat gently, then beat in any chopped fennel tops. Serve immediately.